REPORT BY STEVE McHUGH: ALMOST 550 runs totalled by both teams from 100 overs on the day, two Heywood players record fine half-centuries in a commendable run chase and another honourable away loss.
That was the familiar theme for Heywood as they eventually fell to a 35-run defeat at Edgworth in the Greater Manchester Premier League.
The home side rattled up an imposing 290-9 from 50 overs on their idiosyncratic Bolton area ground to leave the visitors with a mountain to climb.
But Heywood for much of their run chase gave another good turn-out by their supporters hope that they could pull off an implausible victory, with Andy Kerr and Jack Morley scoring 58 and 56 respectively in a second-wicket stand of 92.
Yet, although Danny Pawson (46) and Bobby Cross (27) also promised to help pull the match out of the fire, it was all too much in the end and Edgworth eventually won by the comfortable margin of 35 runs.
So where can Heywood reflect and identify that they might have done better?
Certainly in the opening overs of the game as their new ball attack of Tom McQuinn and Pawson, after the former had Alex Hughes caught in his second over, failed to hit a consistent length and were heavily punished by Ally Dickson.
So much so that left-arm spinner Morley was introduced into the attack for the eighth over of the game with the total racing out on control on 58, and he responded by bowling Dickson for 40 made off 27 balls.
That set the tone for the innings and professional Clyde Fortuin maintained the home side’s momentum with 48.
Yet the Heywood attack did fight back bravely and three wickets for skipper Travis Townsend helped reduce Edgworth to 167-7 and leave the visiting contingent with high hopes of a more modest victory target.
Then came the turning point of the game as Guy Haynes joined overseas amateur Phil Thompson.
Haynes has previously opened the batting for Edgworth and underlined his prowess in an eighth-wicket stand of 104 from 85 balls.
By the time Thompson was lbw to Pawson for 57 the score had rocketed up to 271, and it was left to Haynes to complete an unblemished 48 before being stumped off Morley as Edgworth sprinted towards the 300 mark.
A victory target of 291 still seemed far-fetched for Heywood, especially when Riley Paterson was caught at slip from the second ball of the innings.
But Morley joined Kerr and the duo dovetailed nicely. Kerr reached another fluent half-century until being trapped lbw with the score 92, then Pawson teamed up with Morley in a further promising stand.
All the time, however, the run rate was creeping up and Morley was run out for a battling 56 following a partnership of 69.
That brought in Cross, lower down the order than usual, to join Pawson for what seemed Heywood’s best hope of staying in contention.
But when Pawson was bowled for 46 with the first ball of the 41st over it was 187-4 and the task looked improbable.
So it proved. Cross was bowled for 27, Mikey Witts was caught behind for 10, and by the time Townsend was also a victim of the wicketkeeper off a skyer for 20 the game was up.
It was only left to Sean Burrill and Dale Latham to bat out the remaining over, Burrill ending the game with a fluent straight six.
At least Heywood came out with the bonus point that their brave exploits deserved. But it appears that they need something more on their travels from now on.
A Dickson b Morley 40
A Hughes c Pawson b McQuinn 4
C Fortuin c Witts b K Cross 48
L Watkinson b Morley 20
S Panda c Morley b Townsend 17
P Thompson lbw b Pawson 57
J Fallows b Townsend 14
K Shields c Latham b Townsend 0
G Haynes st Latham b Morley 48
J McGreavy not out 10
A Syddall not out 1
Total (for 9 wkts, 50 overs) 290
Fall of wickets: 1-16, 2-58, 3-108, 4-141, 5-143, 6-167, 7-167, 8-271, 9-283
Bowling: T McQuinn 5-0-34-1, D Pawson 6-0-43-1, J Morley 14-0-97-3, K Cross 13-2-64-1, T Townsend 12-2-44-3
R Paterson c Watkinson b Syddall 0
A Kerr lbw b Watkinson 58
J Morley run out 56
D Pawson b Watkinson 46
R Cross b Fallows 27
T Townsend c McGreavy b Watkinson 20
M Witts c McGreavy b Fallows 10
S Burrill not out 17
D Latham not out 2
Total (for 7 wkts, 50 overs) 255
Fall of wickets: 1-0, 2-92, 3-161, 4-187, 5-214, 6-230, 7-244
Bowling: A Syddall 10-0-29-1, J Fallows 10-1-54-2, S Panda 6-0-29-0, L Watkinson 15-1-77-3, P Thompson 9-0-56-0
- None Found